New Delhi: United  States President Donald Trump lambasted Iran and asked the country not to ‘kill its protesters’ who are demonstrating after the government admitted they accidentally shot down a Ukraine plane killing 178 people on board.

Citing Robert O’Brien’s interview to Fox News Sunday, Trump asserted that his national security advisor has suggested that sanctions by the United States and protests have choked-up the country (Iran) which will further force them to negotiate.

Notably, O’ Brien and President Trump were referring to the fresh sanctions, which US has imposed on Iran in retaliation for its missile attack on air bases housing American troops. The sanctions targeted Iran’s manufacturing, mining and textile sectors as well as senior Iranian officials who Washington said were involved in the January 8 attack on US military bases in Iraq.

“National Security Adviser suggested today that sanctions and protests have Iran ‘choked off’, will force them to negotiate. Actually, I couldn’t care less if they negotiate. Will be totally up to them but, no nuclear weapons and “don’t kill your protesters”, tweeted the US president.

In an interview with Fox News Sunday, US NSA O’Brien had claimed that Iran would soon have ‘no choice’ but to engage diplomatically with the Trump administration. “I think the maximum pressure campaign is working. Iran is being choked off and the country is going to have no other choice but to come to the table”, he had said.

However, this is not the first time Trump has supported protests in Tehran. Earlier on Saturday, the US president had backed the hundreds of Iranians, who took to streets raising slogans against the government and the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC).

“To the brave, long-suffering people of Iran: I’ve stood with you since the beginning of my Presidency, and my administration will continue to stand with you. We are following your protests closely, and are inspired by your courage,” said Trump.